Welcome to Week Four of the 14 Week Home-Ec 101 Spring Clean/Deep Clean. (Of course if you’re just here for ideas on how to clean your bedroom, you are always welcome.)
Make Room to Work
A clean bedroom can help start your day with a sense of peace and control, so if you didn’t clear clutter during week one, today I want you to do so without mercy. I am not talking about sentimental objects. I mean empty glasses on the nightstand, that pile of books that belong on the shelf or donated to the little library down the street.
The pile of clothes you’re never going to wear again because your office has now gone fully remote and your corporate headquarters are selling your physical branch? Just save a couple of pieces for interviews or for when it’s safe, and you want to work from a co-working space or Starbucks. We will get there; just not this week.
Should we talk about the
clothes rack Stairmaster?
Don’t hang on to guilt. Find your inner Elsa and ♫ Let it go!
- A vacuum with a soft bristle attachment and an edge tool if you have carpeting
- Window cleaner and paper towels or newspaper
- If you have wood furniture polish and an applicator (rag)
- A stepladder or sturdy chair
- Maybe a screwdriver (standard or Philip’s head, that’s the cross-type, depending) I really like the ones that you can flip the tip out for small jobs. They aren’t the best for big jobs though
- Appropriate floor cleaner if you have tile or hardwood
- Dilute degreaser
- If you have allergies, grab one of the masks we’ve been wearing everywhere. We’re going to raise some dust in the next hour or two. You’ll have a much better afternoon/evening. (When I say grab it, I do mean to wear it)
Now load up your favorite music, audiobook or podcasts and let’s get going.
Start Top to Bottom
If you have a ceiling fan, we’re going to tackle this first, but we’re going to be smart about it by moving the duvet or bedspread and pillows to another location first. You don’t need to sleep with the dust you’re about to raise.
Whether or not you have a fan attached, carefully remove the glass or globe. You may need a screwdriver for this task or it may be held in place with a fitter screw (the kind you can just twist with your fingers, and yes, I had to look up what they are called.) Take the glass or globe to a sink and carefully clean them. You will be amazed at the difference. When everything is reassembled.
While the glass is drying, climb back up and carefully wipe down the fan blades. It’s best to use a slightly damp rag (NOT soaking or dripping). I promise there are usually only 4 or 5 blades unless you have one of those fancy-pants expensive fans. Do not spray the fan itself with cleaner. It is an electric appliance. Use your rag to wipe down the motor base and remove the rest of the dust. Give any pull chains a quick once over, too.
Reassemble the light fixture.
Check the corners of the room for cobwebs and knock those down. If you have curtains or a valance in your bedroom your next step is going to be highly dependent on your available time and the care they require. If they are washable, you can run them through the laundry or you can vacuum them with the soft bristle attachment.
Next up are your window blinds, if you have them. Give them a good, but gentle vacuuming with your soft-bristle attachment.
Then raise the blinds and vacuum all parts of the window with the attachment, before washing the window with window cleaner. If your window is in really rough shape. We’ve got help for that.
Every bedroom is slightly different, so I can’t give you a perfect checklist of what to do for the middle steps. Strip the bed, down to the mattress and give it a good vacuum. If you have a standard, coil spring non-pillowtop mattress, rotate the mattress according to where you are on the schedule (After three months you turn it so the head is at the feet and after another three months you give it a flip.) Other types of mattresses require different types of care, follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
Wash the mattress pad and sheets before replacing them.
Clean Left to Right
To keep some method to this madness of cleaning your bedroom, stand in your doorway, and approach your room in sections, working from left to right. The dirtier the room, the smaller the section. Organized adult? 6×6. Unsupervised teenager? 2×2. You know you, you decide.
Whatever size your square, don’t move on until that small section of floor is completely clear, the dresser top has been tackled, the mirror has been polished, or that shelf has been organized and dusted.
Once you have finished the cleaning and organizing portion, it’s time to deal with one of my least favorite parts of the bedrooms, the baseboards and, if you have carpet, the crevice between the carpet and wall. My method is to sit on the floor with the vacuum hose in hand with both the crevice tool and soft bristle attachment at the ready and work my way around the room, attacking both at the same time. You may prefer to do two laps.
Suppose the baseboards are filthy, perhaps because a dog likes to lean on that part of the wall. A dilute degreaser will take care of that. Of course, please test in an inconspicuous area.
Vacuum or sweep the rest of the room.
Get a rag dampened with a dilute degreaser and wipe the lightswitch plate, the door jam, and the area of your door around your doorknob.
Make your bed.
Now congratulate yourself and take a few moments to enjoy your bedroom or take a nap, your choice.